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The Czech vz.61 Skorpion is a rather unusual sort of firearm; a machine pistol designed from scratch instead of being converted from an existing handgun design, and chambered for the seemingly out of place .32ACP (7.65mm Browning) cartridge. It is a weapon which seems awkwardly small as a shoulder-fired submachine gun, and yet equally awkwardly large as a handgun. So what is it?
Well, it is a pretty classic example of a Personal Defense Weapon (PDW). It was originally designed for vehicle and artillery crews, for troops who needed more than a simple handgun, but could not practically tote around a full size rifle. The vz.61 is small enough to be worn in a belt holster, keeping it readily at hand but as unobtrusive as possible. With the stock extended, it is capable of much better accuracy than a handgun, and the combination of fully automatic fire with the light .32 caliber cartridge makes for a high volume of quite controllable fire.
The Skorpion is also a remarkably sophisticated mechanical design, with a very compact hammer fired mechanism and a rate reduced to keep the 20 round magazines from being expended *too* quickly.
Thanks to Marstar for letting me examine and shoot their Skorpion!
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At Forgotten Weapons I think the most interesting guns out there are the most obscure ones. I try to search out experimental and prototype weapons and show you how they work, in addition to more conventional guns that you may not have heard of before. You’re much more likely to find a video on the Cei Rigotti or Webley-Fosbery here than an AR or Glock. So, do you want to learn about something new today? Then stick around!